Episode 93: Turning your side-hustle into your full-time job – with Julia Menheere

Julia Menheere explains how, by using her background in data analysis and economics, she took her interest in personal finance to launch a side-hustle educating people on finance and why she’s now decided to make it her full-time job.

Today’s guest

Julia Menheere

Website: Julia Menheere

LinkedIn: Julia Menheere

Instagram: @juliamenheere

Email: julia@juliamenheere.com

Julia runs a personal finance education business, through which she’s helped her clients go from being clueless about money to having a clear financial plan, fatty savings accounts and solid investing strategies implemented.

Julia knows money and numbers.  She has a research masters’ degree in economics and experience working for the Dutch Ministry of Finance and top-tech firm Uber’s money department.  She’s also the living proof that once you decide to take control over your finances, you can live life on your own terms – in her case, having her own business full-time.

What you’ll learn in this episode

  • [01:07] Julia explains her business and who she primarily works with.
  • [01:59] Julia talks about leaving Uber and how she came to start her own business.
  • [03:25] Julia talks through her education and the work experience that led her to work as a data analyst at Uber.
  • [05:55] Defining what a data analyst does.
  • [07:18] Looking at the typical education and career path of someone who wants to become a data analyst.
  • [08.02] Julia explains how and when she became interested in personal finance.
  • [11:29] Using the example of spending at Christmas to help start budgeting.
  • [13:03] How to become educated on personal finance.
  • [13:58] Julia talks about when she realised she would like to help others with their finances.
  • [16:05] Why freedom was the primary driver for Julia to share her knowledge of personal finance and to start her side-hustle.
  • [17:45] Julia discusses the tactics she employed when she started her own business.
  • [20:08] The importance of knowing your audience when driving traffic to a new blog.
  • [22:07] How Julia approached her employee about going part-time.
  • [24:45] Julia discusses what led her to move into working in her own business full-time.
  • [26:05] Where Julia sees the business going over the next few years.
  • [26:57] What Julia enjoys about her work and how she makes it suit her lifestyle.
  • [28:53] The challenges you can face when starting your own business.
  • [30:36] How to deal with doubts around the success of a business when you are starting out.
  • [31:46] Julia reflects on how useful her analytics background is within her own business.

Resources mentioned in this episode

Please note that some of these are affiliate links and we may get a small commission in the event that you make a purchase.  This helps us to cover our expenses and is at no additional cost to you.

To see the resources recommended by all our guests, visit the Resources page.

Episode 93: Turning your side-hustle into your full-time job - with Julia Menheere

Jeremy Cline 0:00
How do you know when you've got a hobby or an interest which you can successfully turn into a business? How do you know when you've built up a level of knowledge that other people will pay you for it? That's what we talk about in this episode. I'm Jeremy Cline and this is Change Work Life.

Jeremy Cline 0:31
Hello, and welcome to Change Work Life, where we're all about beating the Sunday evening blues and enjoying Mondays again. Now, why might you leave a job with one of the world's most innovative and fastest growing companies to run your own business, especially during a global pandemic? That's what we're going to find out today with my guest, Julia Menheere. Julia was until recently working for Uber until she decided to go full time with her business in the personal finance space. Julia, welcome to the podcast.

Julia Menheere 0:58
Thank you, Jeremy, it's good to be here.

Jeremy Cline 1:00
Can you start by describing your business? You mentioned it's in the personal finance space. But can you tell us a bit more about who you're helping and how you're helping them?

Julia Menheere 1:08
Yes, absolutely. I help successful, mostly professionals with their personal finances. This is often something that they have neglected or feel like they're lagging behind, whereas actually, they're not, because most of us, we don't learn about personal finance in school or from our parents as much as we actually need it. So, I teach people how to manage their money better. But now, especially, I focus on teaching others how to get started with investing, so that they can also have their money work for them, instead of just working for their money.

Jeremy Cline 1:42
So, this is about retirement plans and things like that, generating a passive income for your clients through investing?

Julia Menheere 1:49
Exactly, yes.

Jeremy Cline 1:51
Cool. So, let's talk about your journey to doing this. When did you quit Uber and decide to go full-time on this business?

Julia Menheere 1:59
Actually, it was just a few weeks ago. I was on a sabbatical that Uber gives you after you've worked there for five years, and I had. I worked as a data analyst in several departments. And I took a month off where I focused on my business. Up until then, I had been focusing on my business in a part-time capacity. So, they let me work part-time, so I had more time to also build this business and see where it got me. And it was during that sabbatical that I launched the second round of my Investing Basics Bootcamp. And it was so successful, that I thought I have two choices. Either I'm going to keep it at this level, which is already great, or I'm going to grow this business and scale it from now on, in which case, the two, having a job and a business on the side, won't work together anymore. So, that's when I made the tough decision to say goodbye to Uber and pursue my business full-time. And even though it is so exciting to work on my business full-time, it was also hard to say goodbye to Uber, because it had brought me so much, so many friends, so many learnings, that it was hard to say goodbye. But it was for something exciting and something new. And yeah, I can only say how grateful I am with the opportunity they gave me to do this.

Jeremy Cline 3:20
How did you come to be doing data analysis? And how did you come to be doing that at Uber?

Julia Menheere 3:25
That's a good question. So, I finished my research master's degree in economics. And that basically prepares you for doing a PhD. And I learned during that research master's that a PhD was not for me, because I really like seeing the impact of my work. And it felt like the papers I wrote, only my professors would read them, and if you're lucky, two other people, and that's it. So, I decided I wanted to pursue another career. It had to be something with numbers, but for the rest, I didn't really know. So, I worked at the Dutch national government as a policy officer in the financial department. And that's where I learned that I actually missed the analytics part. So, budgeting was more about politics and certain budget cycles that you go through every year in the government. And even though you have a big societal impact, I felt I couldn't contribute as much, and I was missing the true, hardcore numbers, analytics parts in my job. So, I tried to find an analytics job in the Dutch government, but that was hard. There were not many opportunities. And at that point, I decided to look elsewhere. And the only company that was really, really interesting to me was Uber. And I was lucky enough for them to say, 'Yes, Julia, come to Uber and be a data analyst with us.' So, I did that. And I said, again, goodbye to the Dutch government, and I went to Uber and yeah, I never regretted it.

Jeremy Cline 4:52
What was it about Uber that it attracted you?

Julia Menheere 4:54
The people, the fast pace. And to me, it was like a candy store full of data. At the Dutch government, rightly, they're very careful with what kind of data you analyse and what you don't. And at Uber, they're also careful, but the whole company is built around analytics. And analytics really fuels a lot of insights on which a lot of action is taken. And that's what really attracted me. And I was surprised to learn that they actually had their EMEA headquarters here in Amsterdam, where I live. So, I just jumped at the opportunity and got even more excited about the company and the kind of work that I would be doing. During the interview process, which is really a tough process, I have to say, so at some point, people told me like, 'Why are you even trying this?' And I was like, 'But it's so exciting.' And yeah, I was very happy that they wanted to have me.

Jeremy Cline 5:46
And in this context, what is data analysis? You hear people talk about being analysts, and that kind of thing. I mean, sort of, in a nutshell, what is it?

Julia Menheere 5:56
You look at data from users, how they use the app, to see how you can improve, basically. So, for example, you may wonder, this was in the early days, why in a certain country, riders would cancel a lot of their rides. That was something that we were tracking, and then we tried to figure out why that was true. And once we learned why that was true, we could actually take action on that. For example, it could be because they looked at the picture of the driver that was going to pick them up. And they were not comfortable, based on their culture, with the person who was picking them up. So, we try to address that based on the insights that we learned. But also, you can learn how people respond to certain prices or how they navigate through the app. My latest job was about figuring out why some payments actually fail, and then, how to improve that. Then you work with engineers to say, 'Hey, look, this is what I see is going wrong, how can we do this better?' And then the engineer figures out a solution. And then, we're going to test the solution. So, we're going to have some users go to the new experience, and others don't get the new experience. And then, we hope to see an improvement with the new experience. And then, if that works out, we implement it for everyone.

Jeremy Cline 7:12
What's the background of someone who gets into this kind of area? Is it very much a mathematical one?

Julia Menheere 7:19
I would say typically, yes. But I'm not a mathematician. So, I am an economist, but I did a lot of applied economics with basically empirical economics, you could say. So, using data to analyse certain causal relationships, so does A cause B, and what other factors play a role. If you're purely into mathematics, it may be harder to also have the other side that's required for data analytics, which is the business intuition. So, basically, matching the numbers with business sense, to come up with meaningful conclusions about what these numbers are telling you. Because numbers alone are just numbers.

Jeremy Cline 7:58
When did you start becoming interested in personal finance?

Julia Menheere 8:02
I would say it started when I was a student, and I was on a tight budget. And I found myself being surprised by certain expenses that were actually not so surprising. For example, some expenses that you get charged for once per year, and that may be a bit bigger. For example, I had a subscription for public transportation. And to get a certain discount, I had to pay 50 euros per year, but that would be charged once per year. And as a student, 50 euros in your budget is a lot and can really take a hit on what you can do for the rest of the month. And I found myself being surprised by these kinds of expenses again and again. And that's when I decided to figure out how to not be surprised by these expenses anymore. So, I started building my own Excel file, looking what I could do. And that was really the first thing where I was like, 'Hey, I'm teaching myself something new, and it has a meaningful impact on my finances.' And from there on, over the years, I took little steps, like improving my savings also, when I started making more money. And then at some point, I learned that I could actually invest, which is something that I never thought was possible, because what I learned in economics is that you have to build a well-diversified portfolio, which essentially means don't put all your eggs in one basket, and not even in just a few baskets. But I always thought like, 'How do I do that?' Because how do I know which stocks to pick and what not. And it was this book by Tony Robbins. He is a personal development guru, you might say, and it's called MONEY Master the Game. And you can think of Tony Robbins whatever you like to think of Tony Robbins, but what he did was he gathered a lot of expertise from investment professionals, like really big names. So, this book by Tony Robbins, MONEY Master the Game, first introduced me to this concept of ETFs, which stands for Exchange Traded Funds. And even though I don't want to get too technical there, the thing with Exchange Traded Funds is that, instead of you having to go out and buy loads of individual stocks, you just buy a fund that has a portfolio of stocks for you. So, you buy a little piece of that. And that makes it much easier for you to just, instead of buying loads of stocks, buy a few ETFs to build your own well-diversified portfolio. And that's how I had an 'aha' moment of this is not just possible for big investors with hundreds of millions of dollars, or euros, or pounds. But this is possible for me, an individual, as well. And that's when I started learning more about it, and yeah, taught myself how to invest. And I never looked back.

Jeremy Cline 10:55
I loved what you were saying about the annual expense, which was a surprise, but not a surprise. You talked about travel, but the one that I immediately thought off was Christmas. Christmas comes every year, it's always the same day every year, you're going to be buying presents and buying the food and everything. And yet, people always find that's the tight bit and they don't budget for it, they don't save for it. And it always makes January and February particularly lean months.

Julia Menheere 11:27
Yes, that totally resonates with me. So, after I found out about this public transportation expense, I, of course, also looked at these kinds of other expenses. And Christmas is very typical one, indeed. So, you buy gifts for a lot of money, and then you find indeed that those months are therefore quite tight. And I realised that doesn't have to be that way. So, what I did is, I just looked at my monthly expenses, we all know them, we see them happening every month, then I specifically looked at the expense, I think, of the past year, and I thought, 'Which one of these are not monthly, and how much are they?' And then I said, 'Okay, so for Christmas, on average, I spend this amount on a present, and I buy this many presents every year. So, this is how much I need every year.' And I divided by 12 months, and then I create savings buckets in my account. So, if you have that option in your bank account, I highly recommend using it. And I just automatically transfer money into that account. So, at the end of the year, when it's time to buy Christmas presents, I buy them, and I take money out of that account. And sometimes, I use a bit less, sometimes I use a bit more, but I never take a big hit on my monthly budget. Yeah.

Jeremy Cline 12:43
It's one of those things. It's incredibly simple when you explain it, but I'm sure the vast majority of people don't do it. And I think it goes back to what you were saying about the lack of financial education in schools, which I hope is something that might change, hopefully, fairly soon. But it's one of those things I think really, really does need to be taught at schools.

Julia Menheere 13:04
Yeah, I 100% agree. I think, because as you said, many people don't do it, and I didn't do it, until I figured out how to do it, and that it was even an option to do these kinds of tricks. But indeed, you don't get it in school. And because, probably your parents also didn't get it in school, they can only teach you as much as they know. So, it's up to us to educate ourselves, which is a bit unfortunate. But yeah, that's why I have my business because I do want to spread the message that you don't have to just go with the flow and see wherever life takes you financially, there's actually things that you can implement that are not that complicated, but you just have to hear about them. And that can make a huge impact on your finances, and, ultimately, your life, because money is everywhere in our life, whether we like it or not.

Jeremy Cline 13:54
When did you start wanting to help other people with this?

Julia Menheere 13:58
I would say it was about three years ago. I just discovered this concept of investing through ETFs. And I also realised how much money you can actually make from investing, even if you don't try to beat the market. Because my approach is not that I try to pick whatever's hot or try to time the market or anything. I just realised, if you have a decent annual return, that the concept of compound interest, like interest on interest, really blows up your results. And when I figured that out, together with the insight that I could actually start investing myself into ETFs, I built myself a tool, because I love playing around in Excel. And I would say it's one of my hobbies that I made a career out of. But I was on a train to my sister in Berlin, and I created that tool to actually show her the power of compound interest, to motivate her to also start saving with me and investing together. She wasn't very hot for it at the moment. But that was the moment where I realised like, oh, I have some knowledge that I really want to share. But not everyone in my family or my friends are directly interested in that. Often, they find it also a bit confrontational. So, why not make a business out of it, where I can actually teach those who do want to learn about it? And by having this personal finance business, I also write about it on a blog and in the newsletter. That way, it is not that confrontational, people can drop in and drop out and hear nuggets here and there that might inspire them to think like, 'Oh, maybe I could actually make a bit more out of my money than I do today.' And I hope that motivates them to start learning and figuring things out a bit more for themselves.

Jeremy Cline 15:52
Why do you think it was important that you passed all this stuff on, when you mentioned how your family weren't necessarily that keen to hear about this, but why did you want to go out and start telling other people?

Julia Menheere 16:05
I would say because I saw what kind of freedom financial mastery, if you would call it like that, could bring two people. So, I felt, hey, I didn't learn this in school, hey, I didn't learn as much as what I know today from other people, but I do want people to know, because the better they are managing their finances, the more freedom they can buy for themselves. And that's ultimately why I'm interested in money. I don't want to get rich for the sake of being rich. But if you have financial freedom, or at least a good degree of financial independence, you have more options. And look at me, for example, where I was able at Uber to pursue this business part-time, even before it started making money, I could take a pay cut to go work part-time, because I managed my finances well. And if I wouldn't have been able to do that, I wouldn't be having this business that I now enjoy so much. So, it is the kind of freedom that money buys. And that's why I want to inspire others to get better with their finances as well, so that they also have a bit more freedom in life to choose the path that they really want to choose. Because often people have the feeling that there's not a lot of choice, and they just have to go with the flow, because you just have to, yeah, have an income next month, and you don't have the freedom to go on a bit less. And if you create a little bit more financial freedom, you create more choices for yourself. And we have one life. So, we want to make the most of it.

Jeremy Cline 17:40
What was your starting point, when you decided that you wanted to spread the word?

Julia Menheere 17:45
I started writing a blog and a newsletter. That's the very first thing I did. I also knew that just one-on-one coaching was not going to be enough, if I wanted to reach many people, because I do want to reach many people with this message. So, early on, I thought I really also want to teach online courses. And one of the reasons was that I had been teaching at Uber as well. But that was more technical analytic stuff. I really enjoyed that. So, I thought that is the perfect combination, where I can apply my passion for teaching others, and then specifically, teaching others about personal finance. So, yeah, and I had to educate myself, because you don't just start a business one day, and it's all rainbows and butterflies from then on. So, I actually found a course by Amy Porterfield. She's a legend when it comes to online course creation. So, I bought an online course on how to make your own online course, which I thought was really funny, very meta. And I learned how you create an online course. At that point though, I didn't really know how to apply it, because some kind of foundations were missing. But I kept blogging, I kept sending my newsletters, I kept coaching a bit on the side. And then, I learned about another programme that would help you sell your online course. And that was really where things took off for me. So, it's called the Experience Product Masterclass. It was referred to me by a friend who had really big results with it. And the promise was, 'Well, you pay us $2,000, but you will make $2,000 in 10 weeks, and if you don't, we'll pay you the difference.' And I was like, 'Okay, that's worth a try.' And that's when I started my investing basics bootcamp. And, yeah, it was a success. And I did it again, and it was a bigger success. So, that's, in a nutshell, how I went from just a blog and a newsletter to now having my own full-time business.

Jeremy Cline 19:50
So, when you were starting out, how did you find your audience? I mean, you know, I could start a blog tomorrow and it would probably have zero readers. I could start a newsletter and it would have zero subscribers. So, how did you get those first few people reading your blog and signing up to your newsletter?

Julia Menheere 20:09
It was a mix of two things, I would say. In my first course that I took, they taught you how to do online advertising, where you make a free resource, and people can give their email address to get access to that resource, and then, they subscribe to your newsletter. So, I did that, I spent, to be honest, a lot of money on it on Facebook. So, on Facebook, I was advertising, so I got a lot of subscribers there. And then, on the other hand, I got other subscribers via posting on Facebook and Instagram. So, more organic, as you would say, or people from my network. So, that's how it grew. And I got a lot of subscribers, I think close to 2000 at some point. But what I learned was that most of these people who subscribed thanks to my advertising were not per se the audience I was looking for. So, I would find that they would often not read my emails, et cetera. So, one expensive lesson, but a good one, that it really matters that you go out and find the audience that really fits you, and who really needs to hear your message. So, right now, I don't do online advertising anymore. I actually heavily rely on LinkedIn. So, I have a big network of connections. And it is a really powerful platform, especially for this space that I'm in, but I think for many online businesses as well, because it's much easier to reach people through LinkedIn, I would say, than for example, on Instagram. Like the algorithm on LinkedIn is much more in your favour than Instagram, because Instagram is just much more crowded than LinkedIn is right now. If that answers your question.

Jeremy Cline 21:56
So, you mentioned you took a decision to go part-time and do one day a week. What led you to that? And how did you approach Uber about this?

Julia Menheere 22:08
Great question. I thought, I realised, when I started my blog, that it was not feasible for me to have that business, however small it was back then, and to have a full-time job at Uber, and also, have a private life. So, something had to give an I didn't want my private life to suffer too much. So, the only option I saw was, either I go part-time and do my business one day per week, or I quit now and go all in on my business from the get-go. I am pretty risk averse. So, I did not do that. I first wanted to also figure out how much do I like this, do I enjoy doing this. And financially, it's a huge risk if you have no validation, other than just thinking people need to hear this. So, that's when I decided I want to go part-time. I asked my manager. I was really nervous about it, because it's not very common at Uber that people work part-time. And as Uber's growing bigger, they have more and more of these policies that do allow you to do that. But it's different, like actually having people do it is another story. It's an American company in the Netherlands, working part-time is super common, in the US not so much. But fortunately, my manager was super open to it. And actually, just when he said 'Yes, it's okay,' I got offered a position in a different department. So, I had to have that conversation again. So, I went through the application process, and at the end when we discussed, 'Do you really want to work here? We would love to have you', I said, 'Yes, I would love to. But it's really important for me that I have one day per week to work on my business part-time. Is that okay?' And my manager was so welcoming that he was like, 'This is amazing. And we love to have entrepreneurial minds here at Uber. If anything, we would like to support that. So, by all means, go do that.' Of course, I had to take a pay cut, but it wasn't so severe. And as I mentioned, I was able to handle that financially. So, yeah, that was really awesome, that they enabled that and supported me in that way. And that was also how I left. So, I told my manager, I was nervous to tell him that I was going to pursue my business full-time. But he was like, 'No, we are super proud that we have had the opportunity to be part of this journey for you, and that we enabled this, so congratulations, we'll miss you, but you go do your thing.' So, I thought that was really beautiful.

Jeremy Cline 24:36
What was it that led you to the decision to go full-time with this? Was it that even a day a week itself just was not enough? Or was it another reason?

Julia Menheere 24:46
It was multiple things. So, I found in the beginning it was enough, but I also had just given birth to a baby girl in March, just before the lockdown hit, and it was really hard to combine being a new mother with a demanding career at Uber, that even though it was still part-time, it's pretty demanding, and then, also having a business that was growing. So, my business started taking off with my first investing basics bootcamp. But then when I had the second investing basics bootcamp, which I launched during my sabbatical, it was such a success that I thought like, 'I cannot grow this business further without compromising also the attention that my job at Uber needs.' So, something had to give. And I thought then it's going to be Uber, because I do want to give my business a real shot and see how I like it if I go full-time, and that's when I made that decision. But of course, it was ultimately my goal to go full-time. So, it was not like a huge surprise. But the moment, it's never the right moment, and it's always the right moment. So, this was the moment for me really, yeah.

Jeremy Cline 25:55
What are your plans for the business? What do you want it to look like? You've mentioned how you've done a couple of bootcamps, and the second one being more successful than the first one. Where's the vision? What's the picture?

Julia Menheere 26:07
Yeah, I want to scale the bootcamp further. So, I want to keep teaching people how to invest. So, definitely, I launch it every couple of months for the coming year, at least to grow it, perfect it, make it better. But I also want to keep helping people with different aspects of their personal finances. So, I want this to be mainly an online education business. And I will do some coaching on the side. But it will mainly be the investing basics bootcamp and then some other offers also. For example, I'm also hosting a retirement strategy workshop, how can you plan for retirement. Those kinds of things that people have on their minds, but have no idea how to go about it.

Jeremy Cline 26:49
And what is the shape of the business going to do for you? What sort of lifestyle is it intended to support?

Julia Menheere 26:57
That's a great question. What I already enjoy a lot right now is that I can make all the decisions. No one is asking me for things, I can build my own strategy and execute on it. Ultimately, I would like to have a team, but a lean team, like I don't intend to have a hundreds of millions of dollars business. I would like to have a good revenue that supports me and a lean team, that also allows me to step away from the business when I want to or when I need to, so that the business can also continue running without me for some time, if needed.

Jeremy Cline 27:36
And is this something which you want to scale to a particular size that you could then sell on, or is this kind of a lifestyle thing which was always intended to be yours, whatever involvement you might have, at various points?

Julia Menheere 27:52
I would say this will be a lifestyle business. I don't intend to build this to sell it off later. I also see this as a personal brand business, so I also think it's hard to build a company like this the way I do it, and then sell it off, and then remove yourself from a business that revolves around you. So, no, I don't intend to grow it to sell. I do intend to make it lower effort at some point, where I can also develop other projects on the side. Because I enjoy taking on new projects. So, I will want to keep this always but maybe now it's full-time and maybe later it will be part-time that creates some more room for other business projects.

Jeremy Cline 28:36
The way you've described it so far, it sounds all very easy. You mentioned the mistakes with the Facebook ads and how that didn't really achieve much for you. But what have been, do you think, the two or three biggest challenges that you faced as you started this business and as you've made this transition?

Julia Menheere 28:55
I think one of the hardest things for me has been to put myself out there. I'm an introvert by nature. And now, I'm building this personal brand, I'm posting on social media, I'm writing this newsletter. That was extremely awkward for me, to be honest. But I just decided, if I want to make this into something, I cannot hide, I have to be visible. So, I will just have to get over my discomfort by doing, doing it and doing it. And then, it gets less awkward and uncomfortable. And that's how I experienced it. It's not that it's not uncomfortable anymore. I still find that a challenge. But it really helps me a lot. So, I also feel the benefits. If you stay silent, then nothing happens. And now that I put myself out there, I get messages on my social media how much they appreciate my posts, even if they don't directly buy from me or something, and that's what keeps me going. So, that is a big challenge, but also asking for a sale is really, really uncomfortable. And that programme that I mentioned, the Experience Product Masterclass, really helped me to just go and do it. Go through your discomfort, and then, what happens after the sale is that you actually get to help people. And then, you see, it may be uncomfortable, and it will be uncomfortable in the future as well, I still find that uncomfortable, but it's less uncomfortable. And you're motivated to do it because you see what's on the other end. You actually get to help people with their finances. And that means a lot. But those are tough challenges.

Jeremy Cline 30:32
Have you had any fears or doubts along the way that this just might not work?

Julia Menheere 30:37
Oh, yes. Up until the moment I launched my first investing basics bootcamp. I always thought, 'Yeah, this should work. But will it work? I don't know. And what if it doesn't work?' But I felt there was a lot of power in those first few sales, because I thought if there's a few people that want to buy this, at this early stage, there will be more, and I will be able to sustain myself. So, the first few sales actually gave me all the confidence I needed. And yes, with the second round of the bootcamp was almost four times as many students as the first one, that definitely gave me a boost that I thought this is really something, but I already believed that from the first round, after the first few sales. I think, anyone who is starting their business, I think the most important part is to get to those first few sales, get uncomfortable, go do it, put yourself out there, put the offer out there, ask for the sale, however uncomfortable, and see the confidence that comes from just one or two or three or four sales.

Jeremy Cline 31:42
How much do you think your analytics background has helped you with starting the business?

Julia Menheere 31:48
I think a lot, but I think it will become even more useful as I grow. What I use it for now, for example, is I analyse my email marketing efforts. I get to see what kind of subject lines people open more and which they open less. I know a lot about marketing analytics. So, I know how to think about cost per leads, earnings per leads, those kinds of things. And I think, for now, up until now, I've been able to get by without putting much attention into that. When you're small, it doesn't matter as much. But as your numbers grow, and you actually have more data to analyse, I think you can really learn a lot from the numbers that you see, so that it gives you guidance on what to focus on, what is going well, what is not going well. I think it's hugely powerful. So, I think, if you think about your career and taking a non-traditional career path, I think it doesn't matter. I think anything you do in life will help you in your next phase. And that's how I find my analytics experience helps me in this phase as well. Absolutely.

Jeremy Cline 33:01
Sounds to me like there's possibly another business idea in there, helping online and entrepreneurs analyse these sorts of metrics, email opening rates and all that kind of stuff. Have you ever thought about doing that?

Julia Menheere 33:11
Yeah, I did, actually. I did. And I might do that in the future. But I thought for now, I just want to focus. I think focus is super important. If I now am going to split my time between the two, I think it's going to be hard to make either really successful, but it's definitely something that's still inside of me, that yeah, I would love to help other people with as well.

Jeremy Cline 33:33
Is there any part of you that wishes that you had done this earlier on? Or do you think that you probably couldn't have done this, had you not had the experience at Uber and in the Dutch government?

Julia Menheere 33:45
But you hit the nail on the head. I would not have wanted to miss the experience I got, not just the learnings, but just the life experience. It's been so much fun so far working at Uber, I just wouldn't want to miss it for the world. That is one thing. I also think I could not have done this four years ago. I think now, I have more maturity, more money also, to be honest, that also helps. During my time at Uber, I was able to build up a very good savings account. It also leaves me not so stressed right now whether or not I'm going to sustain myself right from the get-go. But also, the network, indeed, the analytics learnings, I think I have much more experience that I can use for this business, that I definitely did not have four or five, six years ago.

Jeremy Cline 34:39
You've mentioned a couple of the courses and books that have helped you out on the journey. Are there any other things that stand out that you can recommend that people might want to look into?

Julia Menheere 34:49
Yes, I would say, specifically, if you want to educate yourself about personal finance, the best book I read was The Psychology of Money by Morgan Housel. It is just an excellent book. I read it later on in my personal finance journey, but I thought he hit so many nails right on the head, that I honestly think everyone should read that book. And of course, the other book I mentioned, MONEY Master the Game, was an eye opener for me. So, that would be the main thing. Yeah.

Jeremy Cline 35:24
Brilliant. And if people want to find you, where can they do that?

Julia Menheere 35:27
They can find me on juliamenheere.com. There, I have my blog and people can subscribe to the newsletter, check me out. I also have an investment calculator, the one that I mentioned that I made on the train to Berlin, where you can actually see how your money can grow over time. People can also check that out for free. I can give you the link. It's juliamenheere.com/investmentcalculator.

Jeremy Cline 35:51
Fantastic. I will put the link to that in the show notes. Thank you so much for coming on and sharing your story and best of luck with the business in the next chapter.

Julia Menheere 36:00
Thank you so much for having me. It was really great talking to you.

Jeremy Cline 36:04
Okay, hope you enjoyed the episode with Julia Menheere. The thing that struck me most about what Julia is doing is that she's not going into a particularly new area or a niche. The whole concept of financial planning and saving into mutual funds or whatever has been around for years. And yet still, Julia has found her audience, the people who need to hear it from her. It just goes to show that even if you're in an area which you think is oversaturated, chances are you've got the voice which will appeal to a certain segment of people who want to find out more in that area.

Jeremy Cline 36:39
The show notes for this episode are on the website at changeworklife.com/93 for Episode 93. And there, you will find a summary of everything we talked about, a full transcript and links to the resources that Julia mentioned. It would be great, whilst you're there, if you could share this episode. There's going to be people that you know who either Julia's story will resonate with them, in terms of whether they're thinking about starting a side hustle or starting their own business, or maybe you know people who are interested in the financial planning space and who might want to tap Julia's knowledge in terms of making savings and investments. Either way, if you just share the episode with one person who you think it will be of interest, then you'll have helped that one person. Next week, we're going to be talking about sustainability, which is a subject which has come up so much over the past 12 months during the pandemic. People don't just want a job or career which they find satisfying. They also want something where they feel like they're doing some good, whether that's environmental good, social good or whatever. It's how you can build that into your career that we're going to cover in next week's episode. So, make sure you're subscribed to the show if you're not already, and can't wait to see you then Cheers. Bye

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